Researchers flew under Facebook’s radar, automated friending random strangers and THEN friended friends of those that friended the socialbots.

Got that?

Oh, and 331 people requested that the bots become their friends.

On the internet, no one knows your friends are bots?  Or have we achieved singularity?


Army of ‘socialbots’ steal gigabytes of Facebook user data

Social networks prone to large-scale infiltration

By Dan Goodin in San Francisco • Get more from this author

Posted in ID, 1st November 2011 23:32 GMT

Updated A small array of scripts programmed to pass themselves off as real people stole 250 gigabytes worth of personal information from Facebook users in just eight weeks, researchers said in an academic report to be presented next month.

The 102 “socialbots” included a name and picture of a fictitious Facebook user and used programming interfaces from to automatically embed pseudo-random quotes into status updates. They also used Facebook interfaces to send connection requests to about 5,000 randomly selected profiles. They then sent connection requests to the friends of those who accepted the initial invitation, and with each acceptance, they scraped whatever information was available.

via Army of ‘socialbots’ steal gigabytes of Facebook user data • The Register.